How much money would you be willing to pay for the very first Dodge Viper ever produced? What if it was originally owned by one of the most influential figures in the automotive industry? If your answer was $285,000, congratulations, because that’s exactly how much Lee Iacocca’s Dodge Viper sold for at auction.
In early 2020, Bonham’s auction house in Scottsdale, Arizona, listed the very first Dodge Viper to ever roll off the assembly line. The Viper — a 1992 SRT-10 — was originally owned by Lee Iacocca. According to legend, Mr. Iacocca reportedly pointed to the first production Viper as it was unveiled at a media event and said, “This one right here is mine.”
When Iacocca’s estate initially put the Viper up for auction, it was estimated that the iconic sports car would fetch less than $150,000. The Viper, which had fewer than 6,500 miles and was a part of Mr. Iacocca’s extensive personal collection, ended up selling for more than twice the estimated sale price.
Iacocca, who passed away in 2019, was not only partially responsible for the creation of the Mustang during his time at Ford, but is also widely credited as being the savior of the Chrysler brand when it appeared the automaker was headed toward bankruptcy. Iacocca went on to later introduce the revolutionary Dodge Caravan during his time as Chrysler’s CEO.